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View Full Version : Online music's winners and losers


MacBytes
Dec 29, 2003, 03:40 AM
Category: Reviews
Link: Online music's winners and losers (http://www.macbytes.com/link.php?sid=20031229044034)

Posted on MacBytes.com (http://www.macbytes.com)

Approved by arn

Sir_Giggles
Dec 29, 2003, 06:33 AM
This guy is a complete and total idiot.

He is saying downloading is a nuisance... yet how do most consumers get their music? by driving to a mall, searching by hand, then having to walk to a cashier to pay, then drive back home, then rip the CD, then encode, then put the songs onto their iPod. Wow, it's easier just to download it. What a moron.

Subscription services won't work because like Steve said, people want to OWN their music, not like after subscribing for 2 years and paying money out the a$$ to have music, then you stop paying and at the end of the day, you got **** all. What a way to build a music collection.

Does this guy have a license to teach?

Wharton marketing professor Peter S. Fader says all the signs point to the eventual emergence of streaming as that model.

But, in the end, downloading is burdensome, Fader suggests. "Obtaining the songs is a nuisance. It's a pain to download them, to organize them, to back them up."

pyrotoaster
Dec 29, 2003, 10:51 AM
Rhapsody is the winner?

When did that happen, because I think I missed that memo... :p

Yet another "article" that leaves me thinking: "CNET? Bias?! No way!!" Well, thinking that very, very sarcastically. :D

punter
Dec 29, 2003, 11:26 AM
Originally posted by Sir_Giggles
This guy is a complete and total idiot.

He is saying downloading is a nuisance... What a way to build a music collection.

I agree and disagree. I think downloading, owning and arranging is a little bit of an annoyance.

It would be much cooler to get what you want when you want it, on demand.

BUT (and this is where the dude looks like a fool and you are fully right), downloads still take an amount of internet connection time so having your whole playlist as aliases for songs on a server somewhere is pathetic if you are on holiday with an ipod or something.

With the current technology, itms (and those that copy it) is far and away the best music solution (imho).

edit: disclaimer: I've been drinking. sorry if I've offended or misgrammared

mrsebastian
Dec 29, 2003, 11:43 AM
that's absolutely the worst f#%king article i have ever read! this person completely missed the point about everything that drove so many of us to steal music online in the first place. more importantly, it's why a business model like apple's itunes works. here are a few points of rebuttle against your (for lack of a better term) STUPID article:
1. we are not going to rent music!
2. i'm not gonna pay $20 for a cd, especially when the artist, because of whom i'm buying the cd in the first place, only gets a nickel per copy.
3. i don't need a computer with like 30 terrabytes or whatever to archive music, you bonehead! that's why i burn cds with all my albums archived. that way, when i want to listen to something i put in the cd and transfer the music to any media of my choice.
4. ... oh just f#%k off with your stupid article.

JohnHummel
Dec 29, 2003, 11:58 AM
I've seen this argument over and over again, especially on Slashdot, and I don't get it:

"A 40GB iPod holds 10,000 songs. How many people will spend $10,000 to fill it up?"

Er - wah? You know, I have an underwear drawer. It is made to hold a lot of underwear. But I haven't spent $1000 to fill it up with underwear.

Why? Because I don't need $1000 in underwear!

I've seen this a few times. "iTunes Music Store is a bad idea, so I'll just use Kazaa/something else, because I can't afford $10000 in music to fill up my iPod."

Again - wah? Why do some critics feel that if you have a $400 MP3 player, you're not fulfilling it's potential if it's not filled up?

"Good lord - I've got 7 MB of free space! I can squeeze in "I'm too sexy"! Yes!"

I have a 30 GB iPod. 13 GB is for all my music, mostly "ripped" from CD's I legally own, a good chunk is now from ITMS, and yes, a few MP3's (usually Japanese in nature) I got from Napster back "in the day" (when CD's from Japan were $35-$40 - now their $10, so I'm "legalizing" my tracks). The other 13 GB+ is taken up with a little bit of Jaguar (so I can play "No One Lives Forever 2" since it doesn't run under Panther), some backup files for work, and that still leaves 9 GB free.

I don't have the burning need to fill it up with more music "just because I can". Maybe the upcoming "mini-iPods" will help these people. "I can't afford $10,000 in music to fill up my 30 GB iPod, but I can afford $800 to fill up my mini-iPod! ITMS is now great!"

I leave these critics with this thought:

Wah?

Of course, I could be wrong - but this is just my opinion.

gerardrj
Dec 29, 2003, 12:04 PM
Originally posted by punter
I agree and disagree. I think downloading, owning and arranging is a little bit of an annoyance.
With iTunes, what exactly is the annoyance of arranging your music? You'd have to do nearly the same exact searching and sorting wiht iTunes or a streaming service to listen to what you want.
Which is more annoying: opening iTunes, double-clicking a song; or launching a steaming app, connecting to the internet, double-clicking your song?


It would be much cooler to get what you want when you want it, on demand.

Actually, it would, but there's just not enough wireless bandwidth to provide unique streams to the number of people that would be required to sustain such a business model. The largest consumer sattelite services (DBS satellite) have about 500 channels available. If I recall, it's taken about 9 satellites to provide that much bandwidth. Lets say that you could fint 50 music streams in to the space of one video channel. That's 25,000 unique streams for 25,000 unique customers. The service would have to be damned expensive to recoup the cost of launching 9 satellites.
Wireless streaming only works if the listeners don't get to choose playlists, but only genres/stations.
A service of the magnitude required would have to look something more like the cellular telephone system, and that just won't happen any time soon with all the spectrum mess going on at the moment.
Even on a wired connection, streaming is more resource intensive. With a player, you only have to run the decoder to play the music. With streaming the sytem has to maintain a network connection, buffer incoming data, then decode it. You wind up using bandwidth and more CPU, this reducing your resources available for performing other activities.

With the current technology, itms {itunes}(and those that copy it) is far and away the best music solution (imho).
I agree with you and Steve Jobs here on this. People want to own their music. They want to play what they want, where they want, how they want. This is born out in the rest of the economy. Most people want to own their home, car, clothes, etc not rent them. The article authors comment along the lines "people don't want to own music, they just want to hear their music where and when they want" is akin to saying "people don't want to own shoes, they just want to walk around without hurting their feet". More books are sold each day than are checked out from the libraries, etc... the ownership model almost always wins out in the consumer market.

Winston Smith
Dec 29, 2003, 01:14 PM
I think this article is typical of the bias that can emanate from Cnet.

I also agree wholheartedly with the previous posters.

However I think there is some mileage to Apple in the streaming model.

There is already a fantastic amount of choice on the music store, Apple could provide that choice as a radio station by say genre only available to .mac subscribers.
This would be a useful addition to .mac accounts and provide subscribers a simple way of hearing new music before they choose to buy it etc.etc.

Nermal
Dec 29, 2003, 03:33 PM
Well, I just decided to take a little look at eMusic, and it appears to work outside the US! (at least, NZ's in the country list when you sign up).

First step - enter your name and address etc.

Second step - Start your free trial by entering your credit card details.

Hmm, you want a credit card for a free trial? Goodbye eMusic, I might come back in a few months and see if you've changed your mind.

gerardrj
Dec 29, 2003, 06:45 PM
Originally posted by Nermal
Well, I just decided to take a little look at eMusic, and it appears to work outside the US! (at least, NZ's in the country list when you sign up).

First step - enter your name and address etc.

Second step - Start your free trial by entering your credit card details.

Hmm, you want a credit card for a free trial? Goodbye eMusic, I might come back in a few months and see if you've changed your mind.

They've required the CC for the free trial for at least 1.5 years now as I recall.
The reason that eMusic can operate outside the US is that they generally only deail with independent musicicans/lables that don't have these contorted contracts in every country like the big 5 do.

When i tried eMusic, I managed to DL 50 tracks during the free trial. Not one of them would play on my Mac. It's interesting that to this day my account still exists, you can't get them to remove it. So when you see eMusic stating subscriber numbers, keep in mind that once you sign up there is no way to un-signup, you will always be counted as a subscriber to their service

Sayhey
Dec 29, 2003, 10:16 PM
It maybe that Apple doesn't hold onto its market share, but to think that will because of services like Rhapsody is just crazy. People like owning their own music. People like building up collections of their own music over time. The iTMS model allows you to do that at a reasonable price. Someone may beat Apple at its own game, but it won't be Rhapsody -- what was this idiot thinking?

MrMacMan
Dec 29, 2003, 11:54 PM
iTMS gives users the Files.

The Ability to put on it on a iPod or do other things...

I suppose if you don't want files forever this isn't the service for you... :rolleyes:

buckuxc
Dec 30, 2003, 12:03 AM
I agree with pretty much everything that has been said along this thread. Jobs seems clairvoyant compared to the joker from UPenn (I would hazard a guess that this guy is a Wall St. has been who sees the world in numbers and $'s and not in terms of people). Ownership is key to any music business model...unless, of course, we all become communists. One severe drawback of a streaming model is that it ignores a niche of the market that is repsonsible for a lot of "single" sales: DJ's. I don't dj professionally, but I usually end up being responsible for the music at team parties (in college), and even I would be at a loss if I couldn't own my tracks. What the hell would a typical DJ business, especially a one-person deal, do?

The 10,000 songs for $10,000 quote is also hilarious. I'm in the process of ripping my entire CD collection to my computer for permanent (relatively speaking of course) safe keeping. When I'm finally through with all 200 of my CD's, which is a tiny collection compared to some, I'm going to have a couple thousand more songs. Add my live music collection into the mix (courtesy of FuthurNet's legal trading service), and I've got enough to fill quite a bit of that 40GB'er.

I would agree with this quote, however:

"I recently had a weekend guest who loves Norah Jones. With a celestial jukebox such as Rhapsody, she could play all the Norah Jones she wanted while she was here. If I had wanted to satisfy my guest's appetite for Jones on iTunes I would have had to pay $10 to $20 for the tracks and I would have had no use for them after my guest left.

This is one reason why combining the two would be reasonable. I predict downloading would still be the primary usage method, but having the option to stream for some price/time ($1/day?) has some benefits.

::long rant section:: (skip if you want)

On a side note, can I mention how much I abhore CD's? I've done the best I can to keep them in good shape over the years, but every couple of CD's I lose a track or two because they can't be read properly. All I've done is carried them around in CD sleeves (many of my cases have suffered cracks)! So, according to the music industry, if I want to be a fair and law-abiding consumer, I have to pay for that music a second time. Is that fair? I hardly think so. The fate of MiniDiscs 10 years ago always amazed me. Obviously they came along at a bad time when everyone had pretty much finally adopted CD's full time. But the medium was less damageable, and it was recordable years before CD's were. I'm just a really bitter consumer, and as much as I like iTunes and what the iTMS is doing for everyone, I think it could go one step further and cut out 90% of bulls**t middle men that call themselves the music industry. I honestly support projects like the old Napster and KaZaa because they've done to the money grubbing middle men of the music industry what many others, such as Pearl Jam fighting Ticketbastard, unfortunately could not: prove how worthless the middle men can be.

::rant finished::

We're all preaching to the choir here I think. Articles like this should have the option to comment, so that the people writing them and others reading find out more sides to the story. Otherwise, it's no more useful than a hard copy magazine. Just my $.02.


sps